European Business Schools Librarian's Group

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No 730: Free trade and protection of intellectual property rights : can we have one without the other?

Jacques OLIVIER and Ai-Ting GOH
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Ai-Ting GOH: Universite Catholique de Louvain

Abstract: This paper is concerned with the interaction between trade policies and the protection of Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs). In particular, it investigates the welfare implications of an international agreement on one or both policy instruments. The main insights are first, that both sets of policies are substitutes and second, that they are affected by the same Prisoner's Dilemma problem. As a consequence, an agreement in both policy instruments is needed to achieve any positive welfare gains, which supports the long standing claim of policy makers from developed countries that protection of IPRs should be included in multilateral trade agreements.

Keywords: trade policy; intellectual property rights

JEL-codes: F13; O34

38 pages, April 1, 2001

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